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Thought you all might want to know about these pieces of shit.
They’re tweeting saying that at Akon they’ll be going around molesting girls with the hashtag “#gropecrew”, and fl0ss even claimed he was going to rape a specific girl. Girls, be careful if you’re at Akon.
Also, signal boost the shit outta these two fucks.
UPDATE: For those of you that don’t know by now they are trolling so they are not at A-Kon and no one was groped, but that doesn’t mean anything said is right. There’s one way to get a rise out of people, but doing this taking it way too far.
- 2013: OMG what's with all these Homestucks at my anime convention?
- 2011: OMG what's with all these Hetalians at my anime convention?
- 2009: OMG what's with all these Kuroshitsuji cosplayers at my anime convention?
- 2007: OMG what's with all these D.Gray-man cosplayers at my anime convention?
- 2005: OMG what's with all these Narutards at my anime convention?
- 2004: OMG what's with all these FMA cosplayers at my anime convention?
- 2003: OMG what's with all these Bleach cosplayers at my anime convention?
- 2001: OMG what's with all this Final Fantasy at my anime convention?
- 1990: OMG what's with all these Japanimation costumes at my sci-fi convention?
- CAN WE NOT?
CONNON SENSE: Convention Etiquette and Advice
I talked about how to get ready for a con, how to pack, and how to behave at a hotel in my last post, CONNON SENSE. In this post I’ll be talking about how to tackle the actual convention. (#long post)
- PICK YOUR BADGE UP EARLY! Some cons will let you pick it up on Thursday, and some cons will stop letting you pick up a badge halfway through Saturday. Most of them will list this information on their website, so be sure to check when you can get your badge and go do that ASAP! Registration systems are getting more efficient with the advent of technology (gasp!) so with midsized cons you probably won’t have to wait in line for half your life, but with bigger cons—Comic Con and Dragon*Con come to mind—be prepared to wait in a pretty sizable line. You’ll want to have some form of photo ID on you and your confirmation number if you’ve pre-registered; if you haven’t, you’ll obviously need money.
- Read the convention policies (always online) before attending so you know what will ABSOLUTELY get you kicked out. Read the props/weapons policy before trying to bring something like an airsoft gun or a ~real~ katana~ into the con. Read the dress code policy.
- Remember that while a convention can often feel like suspended reality or the internet come to meatspace, it is actually real life with real people who won’t appreciate you stopping in the middle of a hallway (or anywhere really) to twerk or perform a solo flashmob of a kpop dance. Have fun, but don’t do it in a way that makes shit unfun for other people.
- Don’t throw things. Ever. And don’t spit! That’s way gross.
- If you’ve got a smartphone and there’s an app for the con, download it! They’re usually free and always helpful.
HEALTH & SAFETY
- WATER! Bring a bottle of water with you and DRINK FROM IT FREQUENTLY. You can fill it back up at a water fountain and avoid paying $4 for a fresh bottle of Dasani at a concessions stand. I said it in my last post and I’ll say it again: stay hydrated.
- Bring food with you for the con! Breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snack foods! EAT THEM! Do not skip meals! Cons get really exciting and it’s hard to tear yourself away from the hubbub but YOU NEED TO EAT! There’s no excuse for making yourself ill. Be sensible; stop and eat when you’re hungry.
- If you’re with a group of people and someone in the group needs to get a food, don’t be a jerk. Go with them, even if you yourself don’t need to eat. If the rest of your group doesn’t want to wait, establish a meeting time and place and make sure you both have working phones.
- WEAR GOOD SHOES TO WALK AROUND IN! I know sometimes costumes call for ridiculous shoes, but DO carry flip flops or flats or something to wear when you get tired or ache-y. (Don’t go barefoot, that’s super gross. I have done it, trust me, it is nasty.)
- Use the buddy system, especially if you’re a younger con-goer. Even if you’re older and experienced, it is never bad to have a buddy with you. People can get creepy and it’s good to know that someone’s got your back. If you can’t have your buddy with you, keep your phone on you and charged and get phone numbers from other friends at the con so you can contact them if you need to.
- Find the bathrooms BEFORE you have to pee, especially if you have an unwieldy cosplay.
- Establish meeting places with your group (if you have one. Which you should.) in case you’re separated.
- When you get your con registration, you should also get a pamphlet that has stuff like panel times and places, special guests and their signing times, some ads, and importantly, A MAP. Take a minute to study the map and figure out where the fuck stuff is, especially the first aid station(s). Shit happens and when you’ve busted your nose doing parkour at the Assassin’s Creed photoshoot or you’re suffering from minor heatstroke it’s better to know beforehand where the emergency stations are.
- It also probably would not hurt to know where the lost and found is, if there is one. If there’s not one, that’s a damn good reason to keep an eye on your stuff.
- If you have a weapon on you (whether its the Zanpakuto you bought in the dealers room or the steampunk rifle you made out of your grandma’s old dresser and a bunch of clocks), make sure it complies with the conventions weapons policy and be careful not to hit anyone with it. Save the fake sword fights for your backyard.
- Keep an eye on your own shit! Do not misplace your wallet, your meds, your phone, or your con badge. (Not everyone who picks this stuff up will bring stuff it to lost and found. It is YOUR RESPONSIBILITY to keep an eye on it. Carry a backpack or a bag (with a zipper) if you need to—I don’t care if it ruins the line of your costume. (You can carry the bag and just put it on the ground for photos if you need to! I always carry a bag with me, even when cosplaying.) If you can’t actually carry one because of your costume, leave everything possible in your room or car or have a friend carry it.
- Again: water! Water water water water drink water driNK WATER! If you have a hotel room and you feel exhausted, go take a nap! It’s okay to miss an hour or two of the con—if you need to rest, you need to rest.
- If you drink (alcohol), be safe and considerate. Know your limits and don’t drink with people you don’t trust. Keep an eye on yourself and also on your friends! Don’t drink on an empty stomach and make sure to drink plenty of water. DON’T DRINK ALONE!
RESPECT & CONSIDERATION
- Be aware of your surroundings—cons are crowded. Don’t walk through photo shoots or in front of people getting their picture taken, and don’t cut in lines!
- Glomping is out of style and has been for years. Honestly don’t even touch people without asking if they’re okay with it.
- Don’t be the reason someone needs the buddy system. Be aware that there are kids at the con and don’t be creepy to ANYONE. Don’t be inappropriate or creepy for any reason at all, especially not “it fits the character!” If someone tells you to back off, do.
- Keep a lid on your dick and put a fucking cork in it. That is to say, do not hit on strangers. Do not make inappropriate comments to anyone. It’s great when people can be comfortable with their sexuality and the human body but it’s not great when some shitwad compliments your ass when you’re trying to figure out where the DC Comics panel is.
- If someone at the convention has a service dog, whether they are training the dog or in need of the dog, do not mess with the dog. That dog is like secret service or some shit, just pretend it’s not there while being respectful of it (and its handler). No matter how cute it is.
- Do not make fun of fellow con-goers (loudly). If you HAVE to be an asshole, do it in private, later.
- Cons are noisy enough without you screaming. Please do not yell. Please do not sing along to a song you hear, or stop everything to do the Hare Hare Yukai in the middle of the food court.
- You know that person who you can’t tell if they’re in crossplay or not? Guess what: It actually doesn’t matter. What assortment of dangly bits they own doesn’t actually (ever) concern you! :-) SO, DON’T ASSUME ANYONE’S GENDER. If you need to talk to them, avoid using pronouns. If you talk about them, “they” or “[insert character name]” is fine. If you want to make friends with them it’s as easy as asking “What pronouns do you prefer?”
- Clean up after yourself. This is a really simple concept. Find a trash can—they are usually about waist height and a neutral color, are lined with a plastic bag, and have other shit in them. They are also usually everywhere at cons, so you have no excuse to leave food wrappers or your empty pocky box or a piece of chicken you sneezed on behind you.
- You lost the game when you started playing. Please do us all a favor and DON’T SHOUT MEMETIC CRAP. Keep those on 4chan or whatever forum you frequent and spare us all the secondhand humiliation when your fellow anon (or no one) replies.
- Some examples, if you’re coming up short:
“THE GAME.” or “I LOST tHE GAME.”
“WHAT TIME IS IT??”
and so on. (Just don’t)
- Be polite to convention staff. Frequently they’re volunteers and they work long shifts and get asked where the bathrooms are about fifty times an hour. If they’re a little short with you, don’t be a shit, and when they tell you to do something, do it without being a sass. They’re just doing their job.
MONEY, THE ARTISTS ALLEY & THE DEALERS ROOM
- Get cash out before the con; there are usually ATMs at the con, but there are also ATM fees. A lot of dealers don’t take credit cards, especially artists, and it’s always good to have cash on you.
- Do a first sweep of the dealers room before you buy anything, and wait until Sunday to buy especially expensive stuff—dealers lower prices and are more willing to haggle on Sunday, and it’ll also give you time to consider if you REALLY ABSOLUTELY NEED IT.
- Don’t touch merchandise without asking, especially figurines or other pricey stuff. Even if you have the gentle hands of a shoujo princess someone could run into you or jostle you and wow there goes the left hand of that $50 figurine!
- Same goes for artists’ booths. Ask if you can look through their stuff, and say hi to the artist. Sitting at a table for 10 hours a day all weekend can suck.
- Don’t say rude things about people’s art/wares, even if it looks like butt, and DO NOT tell them their prices are too high. Artists selling in the AA most likely set their prices too low, and just because you’re cheap doesn’t mean their art should be.
- Don’t be weird at artists you like—they’re people too. They’re probably just as flustered and excited that you follow them on tumblr or deviantArt as you are.
- Don’t rely on the venue for food; convention food is hella expensive. Budget for food, bring your own, or check BEFOREHAND to see if there are places around the con with cheap food (eg. corner store) so if you get hungry/run out of something there may be somewhere nearby to get a replacement.
- Don’t stop in the aisles to get pictures of cosplayers. Ask if you can step out of the way with them and get a photo.
PANELS & SIGNINGS
- If there’s a panel you want to attend, make sure you keep a schedule on hand and find out where it’s being held beforehand. Set a timer on your phone so you remember to actually go—it’s easy to lose track of the time at a con.
- There’s a good reason the people on the panel are on the panel and you aren’t. Don’t yell dumb shit out just because you want to; other people are attending the panel FOR THE PANELISTS, and there is usually a time set aside for people to ask questions if you absolutely must express yourself.
- If there is a famous person in the panel do not be weird or aggressive at them. Do not ask them sexual questions or tell them uncomfortable things or recommend RPF fanfiction to them. Please. PLEASE DON’T DO THIS. It will not only put the panelist off the convention, but it will cast a mysterious warding spell around you that alerts people to your lack of self control and respect.
- If you have a giant ass hat or something of the sort, TAKE IT OFF during panels, people cannot see through it. Sit in the back if it’s glued to your head. Also if you’re like seven feet tall and the person behind you is 5’2” DON’T SIT IN FRONT OF THEM. BE NICE!!!! Short people want to see things too, things that aren’t the back of your shirt.
- If you’re planning on going to a signing, find out where it’s going to be HOURS BEFOREHAND. Show up at least an hour beforehand because signings are going to be crowded! This goes for panels featuring super famous people as well. Get there early and get in line. Especially if the convention is a big one, like Comic Con or Dragon*Con, get there SUPER MAD EARLY.
- Don’t ask for weird or excessive things when you get your signature. You’re taking up both the signer’s time and the time of the people behind you in line who don’t care if your ten internet friends also want Misha Collins’ signature.
COSPLAY, CLOTHES, AND COMMON SENSE
- Check the weather and costume accordingly. Heat stroke and frostbite don’t make good memories or photos. If you think you can handle a turtleneck and a tailcoat in 90º weather with 70% humidity go for it, but stay hydrated and bring a buddy with you to occasionally fan you and spray your underarms with lysol.
- Wear comfortable shoes as often as you can!
- If you are wearing clothes that could cause chafing in hot weather, invest in baby powder (it works wonders) or this stuff (also a miracle). Chafing may sound funny but having your thighs rubbed raw on day one of the con can make the whole weekend blow.
- Wash your cosplays before you pack them. Iron them when you get to the hotel. Most hotels have ironing boards and irons and if they don’t you can probably ask for one. If this is impossible, you can also steam wrinkles out by hanging the costume in the bathroom and taking a hot hot shower. If your cosplay has been wadded up in a bag for two months it’s going to look like it’s been wadded up in a bag for two months. Even if you think it looks fine—IRON IT. If you don’t know how to iron things, here is a fun tutorial for you.
- Make sure your costume is secure. Don’t shed feathers everywhere or get makeup/body paint on other people. If you think you might do this, sew your feathers in tighter and fucking seal your makeup. (Homestuck fandom I am looking at you again!!!) You can do this with baby powder and hairspray.
- (Speed sealing tutorial: pat baby powder on the makeup until it doesn’t come off on your hand anymore, and use a soft makeup brush to brush away excess powder. When all of the painted areas are baby butt soft, apply a light layer of cheap hairspray to all the areas. When this is dry, congratulations, you have sealed your makeup.)
- If you’re cosplaying or at a fandom photoshoot or whatever, represent your fandom well.
- Be aware of your surroundings and don’t hit people with your Keyblade, Buster sword, Hammer of Zillyhoo, Pyramid Head, huge wings, rubber horse mask, or your tail.
- Also be careful of other people’s costumes! Don’t step on people’s dresses, feet, or any other trailing costume part. Don’t barrel into people (at all), but especially don’t if they’re holding a prop. Props are hard to make and take a long time and usually a fair amount of money.
- If you do break someone’s shit, offer to pay for it, even if it was an accident.
- Have a friend be a spotter if you have trouble seeing in a costume or can’t access your phone or need help moving some of your costume. Don’t try to do it alone! A friend can make your life tons easier letting you enjoy being in the cosplay!
- If you don’t have access to a friend for costume spotting, plan your costume accordingly.
- Do not touch other people’s outfits without asking. Admire from a polite and socially acceptable distance.
- Always ask a cosplayer before taking their picture. If they say no, respect that they don’t want their photo taken.
- Try not to ask cosplayers for their photo while they’re eating. Wait until they are done or try to find them later.
- Wait until the cosplayer is ready and posed for their picture before you take it. If you have an unreliable camera, set it so it takes multiple pictures at once. You can delete the bad ones later and this way you don’t have to take up 10 minutes trying to get The Perfect Shot.
- Keep with flow of traffic. If you need a pic of somebody or they need a pic of you and you are ships crossing in the night or something, move it elsewhere AND GET OUT OF THE WAY OF ESCALATORS, and then get their picture.
- Thank cosplayers for their picture.
- Be careful asking for pairings/shipping photos with or of strangers. If they aren’t comfortable with it, don’t press the issue. Just don’t do it.
- If your friends are helping you with your cosplay be sure to thank them/help them back or buy them food or something.
- Please be aware that cultures are not costumes. Adding a sombrero and a mustache to a character doesn’t make it Hilarious. Swastikas are not accessories. Real world national flags are not accessories or capes or blankets. (Hetalia fandom I am staring deep into your soul.) Be aware of the connotations and weight your costume has and if you aren’t sure if it’s appropriate, don’t do it.
You can follow all these guidelines and have hella fun. Trust me—all these things do is make sure the convention is just as fun for other people as it is for you!
listen up cats and kittens
even the smallest of cons are busy, active places full of lots and lots of people
and this can be daunting
especially if it’s your first convention ever
and especially if you’re suffering from some form of anxiety
some of you might already know that teal is the associated colour of anxiety awareness and so i’ve had the idea of wearing a teal ribbon around your wrist to say ‘please give me some extra space’
the name of the project is EXHALE, so displaying that word on your wrist can be an indicator too!
please spread the word - you could help a person feel safe
(NOTE: i’ll be handing out teal ribbon at any con i’m attending - you’ll next see me at doj-con in dundee on 4/13)
'CON'NON SENSE: How to Prepare & Pack for a Convention (a guide by Crowry) also featuring WHAT NOT TO DO AT A HOTEL
Okay, this post is going to be lengthy, so please bear with me. I want to talk about preparing to attend a convention, how to pack sensibly, and what NOT to do at a hotel. I’ve been attending cons for nearly a decade now and aside from that I have traveled often and widely with my family. I have also worked as hotel cleaning staff, and I know exactly how much someone will hate you for leaving the bathroom looking like a bomb of wig hair, eyeshadow, and toothpaste went off in it. (Hint: a lot.)
HERE WE GO
Starkid at Invasion Con: Did you have any senior pranks?
- Dylan: We had this olympic sized swimming pool at my school, so for ours - I graduated high school in 2005 - we spray painted this mattress and put it in the pool. But then it became so absorbent that it sunk to the bottom and no one had the strength to lift it out. They had to get a crane in to get it out the pool.
- Joey: We had this one guy who had been collecting Christmas trees for months. Just hundreds of these old Christmas trees people were throwing out. And he kept them in this canyon next to the school. So one night, a math teacher - who will not be named - left his classroom door open so they could get in. And they filled every room with these trees. Hundreds of them. They were everywhere and in the bathrooms they were putting them in the stalls. The rooms were just so full, filled to the brim.
quick conventiongoers psa
If you’re at an artist’s table, putting your stuff on top of their art/prints/books is rude and disrespectful as hell. Double disrespectful as hell if you’re putting food and drink there.
If you need to put stuff down to look through someone’s display, please place it on the floor in front of you.
Time to be done with 'Cosplay Drama'
What happened this week in terms of cosplay that I saw?
- More about the CONsent Movement
- Cosplay Photographers and getting paid
- Jessica Nigri’s lack of permission for selling a photo
But what was more abundant that I saw this week on my personal feed than all of the three above?
- “Getting really sick and tired of this cosplay drama. Cosplay is about having fun.”
I’m sorry if this is a little shocking to everyone, but cosplay isn’t just about having fun. I know, mind blowing, yes? But let us think of a few things about cosplay.
Cosplay is a growing world wide hobby that connects people via conventions and the internet with their hobby. These are people who can be into cosplay for reasons such as: craftsmanship, overcoming personal social boundaries, making friends, showing appreciation for a character, wanting to be socially accepted, omgIjusthavetowearthat, ect. No one person’s story is the same when it comes to why they love cosplay. These people who buy or create their own costumes will also feature themselves in performance or craftsmanship competitions, and out of this be naturally competitive in cosplay. They go to these conventions amongst other con goers and mix with a multitude of fandoms which they may, or may not like. They interact and are photographed by professional photographers, beginner photographers, other cosplayers, staff members, panelists, security, guests, other convention goers, and regular people outside of the convention. They interact with people of the same fandoms at photoshoots or mix and match with other fandom followers in a relaxed place in the convention or possibly backstage at an event like the Masquerade. They trade information with people and connect via the internet, and cosplayers who utilize a fan page connect with hundreds, if not tens of thousands of fans online. We share each others work online while also posting our own. We make friends with other cosplayers, and sometimes the relationship grows deeper or just falls apart.
Cosplaying above all else is a hobby that is run majority on being social with others. The heart of you doing it might be simply to dress up as your favorite character, but in the end you will become this character in order to socialize with others (or attempt to.)
So why is it that cosplay cannot be just about fun? Because people don’t socially interact the same way and do not agree with each other. You have millions of cosplayers who are from different towns, different countries, speak different languages, believe in different religions or philosophies, believe in different political ideals, were all raised differently, have different kin and different family, ect ect. Though you may not think you bring these in with you when you cosplay, these are the fundamental ideals that build you as a person. So when you put several thousand people together in the same location with only ‘cosplay’ as their only similarity, there is going to be friction.
Cosplay is not a perfect hobby. If you expect to interact socially with other people in this hobby you have to come to realize that there is going to be problems and there are going to be disagreements. And that people are going to want to vocalize that there are problems in the community and either be even toned about it or radical off the wall.
When you throw down a cosplay disagreement as ‘cosplay drama’, you spit in the face of the debate that might be rather important to the growth of our community.
- CONsent isn’t just a bunch of girls in sexy outfits complaining that they hate being called ‘fuckable’ at con. It’s a microcosm of a fight against rape culture and other types of harrassment in our own community.
- The fight over paid/free photographers is more than people being cheap. It’s also revealing a lot of issues when it comes to photographers at conventions now having to face the fear of being hit with needing to make licensing issues at conventions in order to have their own light equipment or professional gear with them.
- The issue with Nigri selling a picture isn’t some photographer complaining he’s not getting paid, it’s an actual case of copyright infringement and was trying to spread the word to get her to take down the piece when he wasn’t being taken seriously.
Calling any of these issues ‘cosplay drama’ is attempting to put up a wall between you and the ‘issue’ because you do not want to deal with it. You want to keep this ideal that cosplay is a ‘perfect hobby about fun.’ But the nice thing about cosplay not being perfect is the fact that it keeps it fluid, evolving, and growing more and more every day; it has no founded rules or moderators that need to keep it perfect.
At the same time you cannot cherry pick a topic based on its format. I’ve seen the same people this week share the Wonderwoman cosplayer photo on their facebook page and a day later complain about how CONsent is nothing but drama.
There will always be the radicals that over-blow everything, that’s part of having different people in a hobby. And it is alright to be at the sidelines and just not give a crap about what is going on: that is a logical choice as well. But by summing up any issue growing in the community as a ‘cosplay drama’ simply limits yourself in helping an ever growing community involved because of an innate fear of the hobby changing.
Unless it is someone specifically picking out other people to make a mockery of them, not all social discussions in our community are drama. Its something that people want to talk about to fix (or unfix) so let them discuss. Time to get rid of ‘cosplay drama.’